A Quick Update

In 2010, we moved back to the small town in Colorado that I never stopped missing while we lived in Mexico. Now I sometimes miss Mexico, but I wouldn't travel as freely as we did when we were there, camping out in remote areas and so forth.

Mexico today is in a period of change, and in many ways it is more dangerous now. That said, I have plenty of American friends who still live there very happily, just taking a few more precautions than they did in the past.

Just to say!

Rosana

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June 18, 2006 — We wrapped up our family time in Idaho and bought a car which we will drive back to our home in the Lake Chapala area,  a 2003 VW Jetta. We bought it and are happy with how smoothly it handles on the road. Our first tank of gas, we got 34 mpg.

As we drove from Idaho to Colorado, we’ve been enjoying the scenery, of course, and I’ve been enjoying how very little trash there is along the roadside. At one point, I was driving when we heard a very loud sound. I pulled over and we discovered that we had a flat tire. I was amazed that neither of us had felt any jerkiness. Some local guys stopped and helped us with changing the tire and told us there was a Les Schwab store a couple of miles away. So we went there, and while Kelly took care of business, I chatted with a Mexican-American couple who were also waiting.

The man is from Mexico and his wife is of Mexican descent but was born and raised in the U.S. They were speaking Spanish with their kids, and the woman said (in English — most of the conversation was in English) that that was how she was raised too: Spanish at home, English at school. By the time we had chatted for quite a while, I asked her if they had experienced discrimination. She said she had as a child, when they lived in a small mountain town where there were few Mexicans, but that her kids had not… they now live in a city. Her husband had experienced discrimination once at work, she said. He grimaced at the memory. We all left the store about the same time with friendly goodbyes.

Later, in a buffet restaurant, a black man sat with some gray in his hair sat down at a table next to us. I couldn’t resist the chance to chat with him, and after talking about living in Mexico and traveling in RVs and suchlike, I said we wondered how he felt about the direction the country was going. He felt that the elderly and the poor were been badly treated.

That night, we stopped in the middle of Utah at a motel. I woke around 3 in the morning to sounds I couldn’t place. It kind of sounded like a car was being bashed in and there were angry-sounding male voices, too faint to make out. I got up and peered out the window but saw nothing. After listening for a while, I felt very uneasy and I woke Kelly. He listened too and decided it was a movie from the room next door, adding that the repetitive sound was machine gun fire. I wasn’t convinced it was a movie, as the same sounds went on and on, for maybe 20 minutes. I knew the odds of it being something dangerous in the neighborhood were miniscule but I was still not a happy camper. “Maybe it’s a video game,” Kelly murmured, and that seemed possible. “I’d rather listen to brass bands in the night,” he added. That’s a sound we often hear at our home in San Juan Cosala.

Eventually we went back to sleep. In the morning we noticed that the pickup parked outside the room the sound had come from said Halliburton on it.

Everywhere we’ve been on this trip, we’ve noticed that there are so many cars and so few people out and about. After over half a year living in Mexico, it kinda seems unnatural to us.

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